Senator Mike Lee Hiring Neil Ashdown as Chief of Staff

Neil Ashdown,was Jon Huntsman Jr.'s chief of staff as governor and while he was ambassador to China. Ashdown will replace Boyd Matheson as Chief of Staff in Senator Mike Lee's office.
Neil Ashdown,was Jon Huntsman Jr.’s chief of staff as governor and while he was ambassador to China. Ashdown will replace Boyd Matheson as Chief of Staff in Senator Mike Lee’s office.

Changes are coming to Utah Senator Mike Lee’s office as the Senator gears up for the 2016 election.

In what Lee’s office is calling a “strategic” change, Boyd Matheson will step down as Chief of Staff to become a senior adviser and transition to head Lee’s political operation, while Neil Ashdown, former Chief of Staff to Governor Jon Huntsman Jr., will take over the Senator’s Washington, D.C. office as Chief of Staff.

The move is just the latest in a series of hires as Lee prepares for his reelection campaign in 2016. In addition to Matheson, Lee has put in place a number of individuals to bolster his reelection strategy, including Bud Scruggs as Committee Chairman, Russ Walker as political director, and Peter Valcarce of Arena Communications.

Sources close to the Senator indicated that Lee looks forward to continuing to work with Matheson in his new role, as well as to working with Ashdown, with whom Lee worked previously during Huntsman’s tenure as Governor of Utah when both were on Huntsman’s staff.

An announcement of the staffing change is expected later today, December 8, 2014.


About Neil Ashdown

Ashdown has since 2011 been the President and Director of iSchool Campus, LLC, an education technology company. Previously, Ashdown has been a Senior Vice President at Zions Bank, served in Beijing, China as Chief of Staff to U.S. Ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman, and earlier served as Chief of Staff to Utah Governor Jon Huntsman.  Ashdown served as a Chief Economist and Deputy Director of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget and on the Council of Economic Advisors for Utah Governors Mike Leavitt and Olene Walker.  He has Ph.D. from the Nelson A. Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University at Albany, State University of New York, as well as Bachelor and Master Degrees from the University of Utah.

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